It’s Halloween, and things are getting a little creepy.

This year, the scares are not all related to costumed trick-or-treaters or haunted houses. We’ll tell you about the three spookiest mistakes companies make in their mobile marketing that you should definitely avoid.


Wildly Inappropriate Ads

Let’s say your kid is playing a harmless game on your iPad. There is a stream of ads, but who cares, the game is free right? Plus it’s a children’s game. It’s not like there’s gonna be anything too bad.

Wait, is that an ad for e-cigarettes? In the kid’s game?

We wish we could say this didn’t happen. But it did, and recently. British American Tobacco ran an ad for their e-cigarette in a kids mobile game. Fortunately they responded quickly and pulled the ad, but the fact that the ad appeared at all was no bueno. While the company claims that they are unsure how the ad ran, the lesson here is to make sure that you are targeting your ads carefully to make sure they don’t appear in front of an inappropriate audience.


Spam That Won’t Die

Mobile spam is becoming a big deal. Customers who haven’t opted in to messaging programs, SMS-type services being the biggest offender are frustrated when they continuously receive annoying messages without the ability to opt out. In fact, people have gotten so frustrated that they have successfully filed and won lawsuits against companies that send them spam without an opt-in. Turns out, its pretty illegal.

That being said, while safer message systems like push notification allow for opt out, you should still avoid spamming customers all the time. After all, you want customers to have the ability to opt out. You don’t want them to feel the need to use it!


Horrible Value Props

So you’ve got a mobile app? Good for you.

Now answer this: what does it do for your customers?

If you have trouble answering, or if the “value” is of a pretty dubious nature, then you should probably reevaluate your strategy. Makeup brand Lancome recently came under fire from Forbes for introducing a mobile app that provided only token benefit for customers while serving as a thinly veiled advertising medium.

Failure to provide value to customers will make them feel betrayed, and can quickly result in your app being blacklisted and abandoned.